How to Tell the Difference Between a Dislocated Shoulder and a Separated Shoulder

Your shoulders are the most mobile joints in your body. They are too mobile that it is easy to get them dislocated. A dislocated shoulder happens when a person’s upper arm bone pops out of the socket that is part of their shoulder blade. However, most people often confuse a dislocated shoulder with a separated shoulder. How can you tell the difference?

The difference between a dislocated shoulder and a separated shoulder

There are several symptoms of a dislocated shoulder. You should first see if it has any visible signs of deformity or if it looks out of place. Also, check if there are any signs of swelling or bruising. Go and see a doctor if you feel any intense pain in the shoulder area and if you find it difficult to move the joint. A dislocated shoulder also causes numbness or weakness near the affected area, such as down your arm or around your neck. You can also experience a few spasms right in your shoulder because of the disruption.

Meanwhile, a separated shoulder is entirely different. Contrary to its name, a separated shoulder does not directly affect a person’s shoulder joint. Falling onto the shoulder could tear one of the ligaments that join the collarbone to the shoulder blade. Since the connection between the collarbone and the shoulder blade is lost, the collarbone tends to move out of position, pushing it against the skin right near the top of the shoulder. Similar to knee replacement surgery in Orem, it is common for people to recover from separated shoulder surgery with time.

People might suffer from a dislocated shoulder or a separated shoulder if they fall onto their shoulder, especially if they hit a hard surface. A few other causes are if they get hit in the shoulder or if they try to break their fall using their hands. A sharp twist of the arm can also cause a person’s shoulder to get dislocated.

When do you need to see a doctor?

shoulder massage

As soon as you experience any of the symptoms, you should seek medical help immediately. But while you are waiting for the support to arrive, try not to move the joint as much as possible. You can try applying a splint or putting a sling on the shoulder joint so that you can hold it in place. Never try to force it back or move it as this can cause even more damage. Pushing it back can damage not only the shoulder joint but also the surrounding muscles, nerves, and even blood vessels. Also, apply ice on the injured joint to help reduce the pain and swelling. Using ice can also help control internal bleeding and fluid buildup around the area.

Knowing these things can be beneficial in the future. Therefore, try your best to read more about it, or ask a doctor for more information about a dislocated shoulder and a separated shoulder. Never attempt to treat it on your own as this might cause even more damage.

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